"Why can't I take the stupid pill?" I cried into the phone.
" You can. It will be okay if you do," was the quiet response I heard back.
"No! I'll become addicted, dependent on them, and then what?" I argued. "I can't do it!"
She gently replied; "You won't. It will be okay. I know it will. Let's pray and ask God to give you peace about taking it".
I could tell I had awoke her from sound sleep. Again. Sleep that she needed for herself in her demanding job that she would be going to in just a couple of hours.
"Why won't He just make me go to sleep without it? He can do that as easily as give me peace about taking a stupid sleeping pill! I don't understand why He's letting me go through this!" I cried out in frustration and exhaustion.
"I don't know why, but I know He loves you and He'll get you through this" she said, and then began to pray for me. Simple requests for rest, peace and the presence of Jesus.
I felt a little bit better. I could sense a far away shimmer of light peeking through my dark night. I hesitantly placed the pill of sleep into my mouth, washed it down with a quick drink and cuddled up next to my soundly sleeping husband.
"Your sure I'll be okay?" I quietly murmured.
"Yup. You'll be okay. Have a good sleep. Love you", my friend said, and I hung up the phone.
She was right. I was okay, and I was going to become more and more okay as the days progressed into months and I found stability once again in myself. She was also right about another thing; she did love me. Not in words, but in action.
John 13:34 says; "Love one another". How easy that sounds but so difficult to really do. We think of love as a feeling of fondness, affection and warm return. And those can be elements of love. But, love is a verb, as the Christian Pop Music band DCTalk used to sing. An action. A demonstration to communicate the value of someone. God loves us, so He gave us His Son in an act of love. We have value to Him and He acted in love to communicate that value.
The Bible speaks of other aspects of true biblical relationships that are part of our being "rightly related" as a family together in the Body of Christ. Aspects that my friend, my "Sam" had shown me.
"Care for one another" 1 Cor. 12:25. The definition of care is to be watchful, to give attentive assistance to one in need.
"Bear one another's burdens" Gal. 6:2. To lift the load off their shoulders and place it upon your own.
"Comfort one another" 1 Thess.4:18. To give comfort is to give strength and hope. Freedom from pain, trouble and anxiety.
"Encourage and build up one another" 1Thess.5:11. To give back courage, to strengthen and empower.
"Regard one another as more important than oneself" Phil 2:5. In my attitude and thoughts I will think of you and your circumstances of life in a manner that trumps mine. I choose to serve you first.
"Serve one another" 1 Pe 4:10 I will take the above regard, and move it into action.
In a post Neil Cole put in his blog on December 19, 2008 (Cole-Slaw.blogspot.com/), he lists 22 different "one another's" in the New Testament. What would happen if we, as members of One Body, called out to be a spiritual family, actually lived out and incorporated these into our lives and relationships? Would the world finally begin to see something unique in our love for one another? Would they see something so pure and real that it would draw them into seeking The One who is evident through it?
Let's give it a try.........